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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 31  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 800-804

Intima media thickness measurement as a marker of subclinical atherosclerosis in systemic lupus erythematosus patients

1 Department of Physical Medicine, Rheumatology and Rehabilitation, Faculty of Medicine, Menoufia University, Menoufia, Egypt
2 Department of Cardiology, Faculty of Medicine, Menoufia University, Menoufia, Egypt

Correspondence Address:
Dalia A Nofal
Department of Physical Medicine, Rheumatology and Rehabilitation, Faculty of Medicine, Menoufia University, Shebin Elkom
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/mmj.mmj_262_17

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Objective The aim of this study was to evaluate subclinical atherosclerosis in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and its relationship to disease activity and damage indices. Background Increased morbidity and mortality in patients with SLE is mostly due to cardiovascular events. Assessment of the intima media thickness (IMT) using B-mode ultrasonography at the carotid artery level is a noninvasive measure to assess subclinical atherosclerosis. Patients and methods The study included 60 patients with SLE (female:male 57:3) in addition to 20 healthy volunteers (female:male 16:4) as a control group. These patients were diagnosed with SLE according to the modified American College of Rheumatology criteria for classification of SLE. IMT was measured using B-mode ultrasound on both sides. The results were correlated with lipid profile, anticardiolipin antibodies, and lupus anticoagulant complement components. Clinical disease activity and damage were evaluated using Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Disease Activity Index (SLEDAI) and Systemic Lupus International Collaborating Clinics (SLICC) indices. Results There was a highly significant difference between patients and controls regarding IMT; it was higher in patients (0.84) than in controls (0.61) and P value less than 0.001. There was a positive correlation between age, duration, erythrocyte sedimentation rate, low-density lipoprotein, cholesterol, SLEDAI and SLICC score, and IMT, and a negative correlation between complement 4 (C4) and IMT. Conclusion Subclinical atherosclerosis is frequent in patients with SLE. The occurrence of premature atherosclerosis increases with increased disease activity and damage index.

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